Song in the Shade

Skuggsång ("Shade Song") is Torgny Lilja's collected poems from 1980 to 1997. A second edition, released in spring 2010, will include poems from 2000 to 2001 (known as the poet's crossroads period) as well as some of his early works. The collection contains poems mainly in Swedish but also in English.

The title of the collection refers to a bird's singing to itself in order to practice. A common European songster is the blackbird (Turdus merula), known for its song from tree tops late in the afternoon. It can be observed during all the year both in the countryside and in green areas of the city.

Skuggsång covers three broad themes: love, life (from youth to maturity) and death. Typical is a description of nature reflecting longing and loneliness. There are also poems depicting the modern cityscape.

Lilja masters all kinds of lyrical formats from haiku to Shakespearean sonnet. In "Beauty on Water," he combines descriptions of an idyllic landscape and the city situated at Lake Mälaren:

Whenever I am resting by the stream,
These waves are slowly whispering to my ear...
Like costly jewels, I can watch them gleam
From many miles away, or very near.

The sonnet was published on the website The Lonesome Writer's Lounge in 2002, while Lilja was studying PR & Communications in New York City before he was accepted for an internship at the General Consulate of Sweden.

At the consulate they had many posters with different motifs from Stockholm, Lilja remembers. "I had never seen any of those before," he says. All posters depicting the capital of Sweden had one thing in common, though: the headline "Beauty on Water."

Dr Dracula (Kill Your Darlings) is Lilja's brand new collection of poetry, which hopefully will be out next year in English and Swedish. In a blend of modernism, creative writing, popular culture, journalese and adspeak, the varying poems contain elements of philosophy, travesty, irony and societal satire. At the core is freedom of choice, opinion and expression.

Lilja has also rendered Anna Akhmatova's cycle Requiem into Swedish verse.

Dr Dracula 2012 
Skuggsång 2012 
Skuggsång 2010 
Skuggsång 1998 
Rekviem 2010